by Des Ryan
After some slower sailing due to lower wind speeds, Francis Joyon on his giant trimaran IDEC is now travelling north up the Atlantic Ocean, heading for the equator and home.
All going well, he will reach the equator sometime tomorrow, making it in about 48 days.
It took Ellen MacArthur, current record holder over 60 days to reach this point, meaning that Joyon will be an incredible 12 days faster than MacArthur.
Francis Joyon's trimaran IDEC is a whopping 98ft trimaran IDEC, compared to Ellen MacArthur's mere 75ft B &Q when the British yachtswoman set the non-stop solo round-the-world record two years ago.
In the meantime Thomas Coville, Joyon's fellow Frenchman, who set out soon after Joyon, has retired with damage caused to his trimaran by collision with ice, during transit of an ice field in the Southern Atlantic. He had just set a new world 24 hour speed record when the incident happened.